Parents' Guide to

Don't Let Go

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Violent thriller has great performances, lackluster plot.

Movie R 2019 103 minutes
Don't Let Go Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 14+

Very disappointing film

Don’t let go is a trick title because you absolutely should let go of this film. It’s just poorly made. The plot and the characters are paper thin. You won’t care about anything because it’s all so weak. I hope Storm Reid gets better work in the future.
age 15+

Rated R for violence, but it's the previews before the movie that are the REAL "R" Rating..smh

This movie showed the bond between an uncle and niece which was really sweet. It was interesting with the past, present, and future twists and turns, but with the typical and predictable "crooked cops" theme that is shown sooooo often. One thing to beware of that frankly REALLY pissed me off was the previews they chose to show BEFORE the movie. Not all "R" rated movies are created equal. For instance, this one was rated "R" because of the murders, violence, and language. HOWEVER, the "R" rated movie previews FULL of sex and may-as-well-be-naked strippers and so much vulgarity and sexual stuff made me want to leave the theater before the movie started. In my eyes, previews should match the same R rating criteria as the movie being shown. The previews were sick and quite frankly I may as well had taken my teen sons to see Hustlers in all its glory being as how they showed SOOOO much of the movie in the previews...not to mention the other sick preview about the guy with the twisted iPhone "Siri" character who was in one scene making him sexually molest her by inserting the phone charger in and out and moaning and groaning...I mean really?

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Reid and Oyelowo deliver fantastic performances, but the movie's cool sci-fi premise is mostly squandered with blah visuals and an undercooked police corruption subplot. The best part of Don't Let Go is the connection between Jack and Ashley and Jack's quickly mounting terror as he gets his strange phone call from beyond and starts scrambling to put the pieces of the puzzle together. Unfortunately, the way that puzzle comes together is far less satisfying. The movie spends almost no time depicting the relationship between Jack and Ashley's dad/Jack's troubled brother (Brian Tyree Henry) or between Ashley and her parents, so the murders -- which should be the most horrifying event in the movie -- lack a certain dramatic weight. And it's definitely hard to figure out (and even harder to care) just why they were killed, though viewers will hazily understand it has something to do with betrayal and a white-powder drug.

Meanwhile, the film seems to have plenty of time to watch Ashley pedaling around on her bicycle (the L.A. scenery is nice and occasionally atmospheric, but when it crowds out plot, viewers might wonder why) and for the phone calls between her and Jack. Oyelowo and Reid act up a storm (get it?) during these scenes, and it's refreshing to see a thriller that acknowledges how much smartphones have changed cinematic stakes -- it sure is hard to believably strand a movie character these days -- and uses them as an integral element in the plot. But it's also frustrating that for characters who rely so much on their phones to communicate, Jack and Ashley don't seem to know how to use them. Really, they resort to communicating on napkins and with gumballs rather than by snapping pictures of clues and proof for each other to find? It feels not-thought-out, as does much of this featherweight thriller.

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